Welcome to the Harbor Physical Therapy Blog
Before you exercise, you need to perform a 5 minute warm-up to get the blood circulating to prepare your body for the activity. Depending on your form of exercise, it is always good practice to mimic your exercise activity at a lower intensity for a warm-up. Below is a list of warm-up activities.
- walk slowly for 3-5 minutes
- march in place for 5 minutes
- do 10-15 squats
- move your ankles in a circle and pump them up and down
- stand on one leg and swing the other back and forth
- move arms in circles in front of you and out to the side
- reach overhead several times
- put your arms out to your side and twist left and right
If you want a more aggressive warm up for running, you can perform jumping jacks, walk up and down stairs, or perform a fast pace walk to progress into a run.
Do you continue having that same ache or pain, which is preventing you from exercising or doing day-to-day activities? Are you unsure what to do about it? Or do you just not have the time to take care of it?
Join us on April 29th at 5:00pm at Federal Hill Fitness for a Free Injury Screening assessment with Dr. Amanda Macht from Harbor Physical Therapy. Dr. Amanda will assess your concern and provide you with recommendations for next steps towards healing. If interested, email firstname.lastname@example.org or stop by Federal Hill Fitness.
After an auto accident, sometimes it takes up to 48 hours before you feel discomfort from the injury. The delayed reaction is due to your body responding to the injury by tightening muscles. Your muscles stay in a contracted state which leads to discomfort and limited range of motion. Physical Therapy helps to decrease muscle tightness through manual techniques, postural education, modalities, and prescribed exercises. If you have been injured in an auto accident, please contact Harbor Physical Therapy to receive treatment.
A Cortisone shot is an injection that is given to decrease pain and inflammation. Most doctors limit an individual to 2 or 3 injections per area over a 12 month period because repeated injections may lead to tissue damage. Some patients might get a cortisone injection prior to beginning physical therapy. Some patients may not get an injection unless pain is preventing progress with physical therapy.
1. Wear boots or shoes with textured soles. Avoid shoes that have smooth surfaces on the bottom.
2. Watch where you walk. Avoid dark and shiny patches. Walking on the snow will give you better traction.
3. Avoid being off-balanced by carrying things in your hands. Use a backpack if you are walking long distances and keep your hands out of your pockets so you can use them for balancing yourself.
4. Take small, quick, shuffling steps if you are walking through an icy spot and keep your weight slightly forward. It’s usually better to fall forward than it is to fall backwards.
5. Make sure you remove snow quickly from your steps or walk before it hardens and turns icy. Put some type of ice melt product down to ensure it won’t be slippery.
6. Avoid walking in shaded areas where ice tends to build up.
During the winter, physical therapists see many patients with injuries from falling on the ice. Thinking ahead and taking your time could prevent a lot of bruises, sprains and even fractures.
1. Carefully and slowly get up.
2. Use ice on sore muscles for 24 to 48 hours. If you continue to have discomfort, switch to heat after 48 hours.
3. Most muscle strains resolve in several days and or weeks. Consult your doctor if you have persistent severe pain that makes standing, walking, and or breathing difficult.
4. If pain persists for weeks, your doctor may send you to a physical therapist. A physical therapist can perform manual techniques to reduce muscle tightness and instruct you in a home exercise program to decrease your pain and difficulty with daily activities.
Please contact Harbor Physical Therapy, if you have fallen and require physical therapy or you are unsure how to proceed with medical care.
After receiving a flu shot, a small portion of people complain of pain in their upper arm/shoulder that lasts for several weeks or months. A theory of why this occurs suggests that the vaccine is being injected into the joint capsule or bursa and causing an inflammatory response.
For relief, you can apply a heating pad to the shoulder/upper arm and rest the arm. If after several days your pain still persists, you should contact your physician that provided you the flu shot. At that point, your physician might refer you for physical therapy.
Physical therapy treatment is usually brief and can provide pain relief and increased range of motion. With use of manual techniques such as massage and stretching, range of motion can be restored and pain decreased. Strengthening exercises can help to restore any weakness that has occurred from lack of use of the arm.
If you have experienced pain from a flu shot that is lasting longer that you expected, seeing a physical therapist can help facilitate healing of your muscles, tendons and shoulder joint.
1. Sit in a chair with a straight back. Use a small pillow or towel roll behind your back for extra support.
2. Sit so your knees are slightly higher than your hips.
3. Do not sit in oversized sofas or chairs.
4. Do not sit in the same position for a long time, get up and move around.
Most running injuries are caused by overuse, overtraining, wearing the wrong shoes, and overcompensating for a muscle imbalance or biomechanical problem. Here are some ways you can prevent the likelihood of a running injury.
1. Gradually increase your mileage. Increasing your weekly mileage by no more than 10% will help prevent injury.
2. Wear supportive shoes that are not worn out. It is suggested you replace your running shoes every 300-500 miles or every 6 months. Also, make sure your shoes address any biomechanical issues you may have with your feet and arches. Most running stores provide an analysis of your feet.
3. The best surfaces to run on that provide the least amount of impact is grass and woodland trails. Avoid running on concrete which is the hardest surface you could run on. Asphalt is a little better than concrete. If you run on grass, look for a flat area of grass. While running on a trail, watch out for slippery, muddy areas.
4. Stretch after you run to prevent your muscles from being too tight.
5. Cross train instead of just running. This way you will be strengthening various muscle groups and one particular muscle group will be less likely to be strained.
If you are unsure how to progress running safely to meet your goals, need help creating a stretching program, and or cross training programming, contact Harbor Physical Therapy for an appointment. We also offering running assessments to uncover your specific running stride and provide you specific tailored exercises to help diminish any muscle imbalances.
The most common cause of morning heel pain is plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a long ligament in the bottom of your foot. It can become inflamed causing pain on the bottom of your foot and heel.
Symptoms include pain on the bottom of the foot either after not weight-bearing through the foot for a long period of time or after a lot of weight-bearing activity.
1. Replace worn out shoes. Make sure you have a pair of good supportive tennis shoes for when you are
on your feet a lot.
2. Stop any excessive exercising or jogging until symptoms subside. If you have recently started a new
exercise program or changed jobs where you are doing a lot of standing or walking, see what you
can do to limit being on your feet a lot.
3. Use heat on the bottom of your foot followed by rolling a tennis ball underneath your foot for a few
minutes for a self massage to the plantar fascia area.
4. Perform calf stretches. Stand on the bottom of a step and drop one heel down until you feel a stretch
in your calf. Hold for 20 seconds and repeat a couple times on each foot.
5. End with some ice on the bottom of your foot. Wrap a bag of frozen peas or corn in a towel and put it
under your foot for about 10 minutes.